We will be accepting Applications for the 2018 Young Women in Public Affairs Award until March 26!

Zonta International’s Young Women in Public Affairs (YWPA) award program recognizes a young woman’s volunteer service, leadership achievements and dedication to the empowerment of women.  Applicants are asked to present written personal statements.  The application on the Documents page, along with our instructions and a Poster.

The YWPA program, begun in 1990 and offered through all Zonta Clubs worldwide, begins with a local award winner whose credentials are then submitted to District and Regional committees for further possible recognition.  Each level of award offers a monetary prize, the highest honor and funds going to ten fortunate winners of the Zonta International YWPA award.

District 1 2017’s winner, Gabrielle Torrealba, also won the International Award!

Gabrielle Torrealba
Gabrielle Torrealba has always been passionate about human rights and social justice, and being an active member of her school and community is of the utmost importance to her. As the co-president of her high school’s Student Council, Gabrielle oversaw her school’s events, facilitated twice-weekly meetings, planned retreats, and sat on the Executive Committee and the HRM Council. She has also been involved with the Canadian Student Leadership Conference, WEDay, her school’s Animal Awareness committee, Best Buddies group and more. Her leadership roles have included vice president of the Social Justice Committee, Grade Ten representative and member of the Spirit and Appreciation Committees with Student Council. Additionally, Gabrielle played on six sports teams, and was the team captain for three of them. These activities have allowed her to improve her leadership skills, work ethic and confidence, as well as pursue her passions and create positive change.

Outside of her school involvement, Gabrielle served as the co-premier of the Metro Region of the Nova Scotia Secondary School Students’ Association, where she oversaw a cabinet of 25 student leaders who plan leadership conferences for hundreds of secondary school students throughout their region. She facilitated weekly meetings with her cabinet, contacted keynote speakers and was in charge of the budget and financial aspects of running a conference. Gabrielle has also volunteered with her local soup kitchen, the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk, Big Brothers Big Sisters and Amnesty International. Last year, she went on a service trip to Costa Rica with 40 students from her school. In Costa Rica, Gabrielle and her classmates planted 700 coffee plants, paved a sidewalk, and bought school supplies and more for the communities of Tortugera and San Jose. She serves on Darren Fisher’s Youth Council and also participated in the Forum for Young Canadians, which helped her gain an inside perspective into Canadian federal and provincial politics.

Gabrielle was currently in her first year of pursuing an undergraduate degree in arts from Carleton University in Ontario with a major in political science and a minor in human rights and social justice. She wants to go on to law school to become a prosecutor focusing in international human rights law. She will continue to be an active member in her community by volunteering with various organizations that correlate with her passions.